Vietnam climbs two spots in e-governance ranking

By Nguyen Quy   July 15, 2020 | 12:08 pm GMT+7
Vietnam climbs two spots in e-governance ranking
People fill passport application forms online at the HCMC immigration office, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran.

Moving up two places to 86th in the 2020 global e-government growth index, Vietnam still lags behind Southeast Asian peers.

The country scored an overall 0.66, higher than the global average of 0.59 in the biennial E-Government Development Index (EGDI) released this week by the United Nations.

Despite its improvement, Vietnam still lags far behind its neighbors in developing e-governance. In Southeast Asia, Vietnam stands sixth behind Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Brunei and the Philippines.

The EGDI presents the state of e-government development of countries. Along with an assessment of local website development patterns, it incorporates access characteristics like infrastructure and educational levels to reflect how a country is using information technologies to promote access and inclusion for its citizens.

The ranking measured 193 countries and territories around the world based on three important dimensions of e-government: availability of online services, telecommunication infrastructure and human capacity.

Vietnam, classified in the group of developing countries having a High EGDI score, has made substantial improvements in telecommunication infrastructure, jumping 31 places from the 2018 report to 69th this year, moving up three spots to 117th in the human capacity index.

"The tax authority in Vietnam has implemented e-filing, e-payment and e-customs initiatives that have helped to improve tax collection and management and have lowered taxpayers' compliance costs," the report said.

Denmark topped the 2020 e-governance index, followed by South Korea and Estonia.

Vietnam targets climbing 10-15 places in the U.N.’s E-Government Development Index global rankings and breaking into the top four in Southeast Asia by 2025.

A government program to turn Vietnam into a digital nation approved by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc last year wants 80 percent of the population to carry out transactions digitally, and aims to provide broadband Internet and 5G connections nationwide in the next five years. Local telecom firms are chasing a head start in the 5G race as Vietnam expects to become an early adopter of the technology.

The government has acted on years of complaints from the public and investors that it takes too long to complete administrative procedures and that the process involves too much paperwork.

Official data in 2019 shows it can take up to 218 hours and cost VND64.1 million ($2,700) to complete a single administrative procedure.

Nearly 85 percent of Vietnamese and businesses are satisfied with administrative services provided by state agencies, according to Public Administration Reform Index 2019.

 
 
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